The ‘mane’ event this Christmas

Echo Arena Liverpool is cantering towards the fourth Liverpool International Horse Show which is set to take place from Friday 28 to Monday 31 December.

The event will mark the culmination of an extraordinary 12 months which saw the city celebrate a decade since its year as European Capital of Culture in style. Each month there were events, exhibitions and performances which attracted millions of people and saw the global spotlight shining on Liverpool once again.

The official finale of the 2018 programme will take place on the evening of Saturday 29 December as part of the Liverpool International Horse Show, which will also be the final event of the year. Alongside an emotive whistle-stop video tour through some of the highlights of the year, the crowds will be treated to one final Liverpool 2018 surprise – the exhilarating ‘Ride and Drive.’

Spectators will get to see the adrenalin pumping, high-flying Freestyle Motocross riders taking their sport to another level, as they go head to head with the world’s best show jumpers and four legged talent in a heart-pounding display of horse power and pyrotechnics. International riders will race against the clock on their horses, followed by leaping off and into a car to finish the timed round.

Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson will present the much sought after trophy to the winner of this special Liverpool 2018 competition.

Mayor Anderson said:  “Liverpool 2018 has been a really special and unforgettable year for the city, and it is going to end on a high thanks to this popular event.

“This year will live long in the memories of the millions of people who headed to Liverpool and were lucky enough to experience one of the scores of cultural activities taking place – whether it was seeing the Giants or the Terracotta Warriors, playing a part in building huge cardboard structures, enjoying the first-ever CBBC Children’s festival in Croxteth Park or maybe having a drink or two at the Liverpool Bordeaux Wine Festival.   It really was an incredible year with a packed programme.

“And although we are marking the end of one big year, we are looking forward to 2019 – so it certainly feels more like the start of something than the end.”

The Liverpool International Horse Show is expected to attract around 30,000 people, and will see a mix of world-class equestrian sport, epic family entertainment and live music. Included in this year’s show will be the Arenacross UK FMX motocross team, rarely seen French equestrian stunt legend Gilles Fortier and family favourite the Shetland Pony Grand National.

There’s also the chance to meet the world’s best riders and their horses as they warm up in the collecting ring, positioned right next to the shopping village.

Founded in 2014 by Show President Nina Barbour, this year’s spectacular promises to be better than ever with world-class show jumping and spell-binding dressage. Top class riders will be travelling from all over the world to compete.

Nina said:  “We are so excited to bring the show back to Liverpool this New Year with the support of the city behind us. Everyone has worked so hard to establish the show and we are determined to become one of the world’s premier equestrian events and an established part of the city’s event calendar. We’re planning to make 2018 the best show yet and so are delighted to be the thrilling climax to Liverpool 2018.”

Bob Prattey, chief executive of The ACC Liverpool Group, which includes Echo Arena Liverpool, added: “2018 has been a significant milestone year as not only have we marked the 10th anniversary of the city’s reign as European Capital of Culture, it’s also a decade since we opened Echo Arena Liverpool.

“We have been honoured to be at the heart of such an exciting programme of wonderful projects and it is fitting that we mark the culmination of this very special year at the prestigious Liverpool international Horse Show, a sporting event perfect for all the family which we are proud to stage at our venue.”

The performances run from Friday 28 to Monday 31 December, with two performances a day on the Saturday and Sunday.

Tickets are available from £16.10 per person including fee (when purchased as part of a family of four ticket) and are available from echoarena.com/lihs  0344 8000 509.

Liverpool International Horse Show